Several members of our Cisco Eos team will head off to Austin, Texas for the SXSW Festival. The Interactive portion of this event features leading discussions about digital media trends and business, and we are looking forward to participating in the conversation and learning.
For instance, we are sure you’ve already heard that the buzz at the 2010 SXSW Interactive festival seems to be all about services that allow you to record your current location in the real world using the GPS settings on your mobile phone. Then such services broadcast your location, socially sharing it online. CNET News.com did a nice overview story about the competing services in this space - Foursquare, Gowalla, and now Twitter and Facebook are adding such ‘geolocation’ services.
What do these services mean for the world of branded entertainment sites?
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Padmashree Koneti, head of product management for the Cisco Media Solutions Group, blogged recently about tying Cisco Eos powered media and entertainment sites with Facebook’s audience of over 300 million people through an Eos implementation of Facebook Connect.
At the recently held music business conference known as Industry Noise, I heard from a group of digital music innovators. In the panel, they shared their beliefs about why connecting with the Facebook audience is critical to promoting musicians and bands they represent. The speakers echoed many of Padmashree’s points on how Facebook Connect drives traffic and awareness of brand owned entertainment sites. The title of the Industry Noise panel I attended - NEVER TRUST ANYONE OVER THIRTY; Description -- “The shaping industry, as defined by those under 30. Innovators on the youthful side take a look at the industry from the perspective of those not defined by the “traditional” industry of the past.”
And these young innovators certainly had a lot to say about how the specific ways they interact with Facebook to achieve the goals of site audience acquisition, and brand awareness.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Padmashree Koneti is the head of product management for the Cisco Media Solutions Group, and the Cisco Eos(R) platform.
A core part of the value proposition for the Cisco Eos social entertainment software platform is the ability to help grow a content brand’s digital audience. This starts with building well designed, immersive site experiences that enable fans to interact with the content and each other. But, in today’s interconnected world of social networks, it’s almost as important to provide your most valuable users with ways to have conversations about your brand with their closest friends.
In this month’s release, Cisco Eos integrated its site registration process with Facebook Connect, which gives customers the option to offer Facebook Connect on its sites, and gives users the option to register/login to Cisco Eos sites using their Facebook account credentials, as well as post Cisco Eos site content and activities to their Facebook pages.
For media & entertainment companies, looking to build momentum around a new album, tv series, movie premiere, or sporting event, this is an incredibly powerful tool for attracting new users to branded content sites. Facebook Connect has already proven to be a significant traffic driver for many websites, often times delivering the same amount of new users as some search engines. However, the overall benefits to a brand go beyond pure site traffic. They can have a fundamental impact on the trajectory of a digital business:
- An increase in brand awareness and traffic growth from the networks of direct site links
- Accelerated user registration growth which can be used as the entry point for loyalty programs
- Revenue growth as a result of the increase in both traffic and registrations
Why? A combination of context and volume. The influence of friends has always been a key driver of consumer behavior. Cisco Eos sites now provide the most loyal, and often times vocal, users with a way to directly broadcast thoughts to their friends on Facebook. Because these messages are only seen by friends, there is a built-in context to each post that helps ensure relevance and response.
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Our Cisco Media Solutions Group team is growing. Recently, if you follow our Twitter feed - http://twitter.com/ciscoeos- you would have noticed a few links to open positions on our team that will help build us and sell CiscoEos. Job postings for roles like Senior Java Engineer, and NY based sales manager. Such positions fall in a unique industry intersection of media, entertainment and technology.
I’m always interested to find out how people wind up at this career intersection. Last year I talked to Damon Berger, who is now at Fox Filmed Entertainment as a Director of Digital Marketing, about how he broke into the business of content development for digital media platforms.This week, I’m in Los Angeles at the USC Marshall School of Business and the UCLA Anderson School of Business talking to MBA candidates about their aspirations to find positions that hit both media,entertainment and technology.
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Earlier this month, the Cisco Media Solutions Group announced the launch of the Cisco Eos Partner Program – a qualification and referral program to help connect Cisco Eos customers with experts in specific services such as web design and development.
Today we’re happy to expand the initial set of companies in the partner program with the addition of Infosys Technologies. Infosys joins a select group of vendors available to help customers accelerate or extend the value of their Eos-powered sites through their deep expertise in web development and deployment, and their in-depth, working knowledge of the Eos platform.
Additional information on the partner program can be found here.
We took a moment to catch up with Loretta Brown, VP of CMSG Services and Support, to ask her some questions about the partner program and the value it adds to Cisco Eos as a software platform.
1) What is the point of the Cisco Eos Partner Program?
LB: The partner program pre-qualifies 3rd party vendors not only for their expertise, but also for their knowledge and commitment to the Cisco Eos platform. That means that you, as an Eos-customer, have easy access to a variety of service vendors that could help you with ongoing or ad hoc projects on your Eos sites.
This is all about making it easier for customers to tap into experts – in both a particular skill / service, and the inner workings of Eos — when they need them.
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